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cranium

[krey-nee-uh m]
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noun, plural cra·ni·ums, cra·ni·a [krey-nee-uh] /ˈkreɪ ni ə/.
  1. the skull of a vertebrate.
  2. the part of the skull that encloses the brain.
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Origin of cranium

1375–1425; late Middle English craneum < Medieval Latin crānium < Greek krāníon skull; akin to ceratokoi·ə , cerebrum, cornu, horn
Also called braincase.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for crania

Historical Examples

  • You have, on the side of your temple, a protuberance, which I have noticed in the crania of inventors.

    Put Yourself in His Place

    Charles Reade

  • They must act, and they must end, according to the influences of their crania.

    My Novel, Complete

    Edward Bulwer-Lytton

  • The testimony of these ancient Greek crania is perfectly harmonious.

  • The shortness and smallness of the crania were very noticeable.

    The Old World in the New

    Edward Alsworth Ross

  • They must act and they must end, according to the influences of their crania.


British Dictionary definitions for crania

cranium

noun plural -niums or -nia (-nɪə)
  1. the skull of a vertebrate
  2. the part of the skull that encloses the brainNontechnical name: brainpan
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Word Origin

C16: from Medieval Latin crānium skull, from Greek kranion
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for crania

cranium

n.

1540s, from Medieval Latin cranium, from Greek kranion "skull, upper part of the head," related to kara (poetic kras) "head," from PIE root *ker- "horn, head" (see horn (n.)). Strictly, the bones which enclose the brain.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

crania in Medicine

cranium

(krānē-əm)
n. pl. cra•ni•ums
  1. The bony case enclosing the brain, excluding the bones of the face; braincase.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

crania in Science

cranium

[krānē-əm]
Plural craniums crania
  1. The vertebrate skull, especially the part that encloses and protects the brain.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

crania in Culture

cranium

[(kray-nee-uhm)]

The part of the skull that encloses the brain.

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The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.